A Conversation: Raja Chakraborty (Tagore Special)

Raja Chakraborty
Have you ever really loved?
Have you ever given yourself, completely?
No questions asked, total surrender.

I thought so. It takes lot of heart and courage. And selflessness. Absolute, utter, selflessness.

Ego. Yes, that's it. However small and invisible, it raised it's ugly head to tell you, 'Don't'!

And you- the logical, rational, oh-so-righteous you bowed down, listened to its nagging whispers telling you not to take that step forward. Ego, it must be. I know it. I have known it all my life.

Don't look at me like that. You know it too, don't you?

And you started living in shadows. Shadows of doubt, mistrust and god knows what else. Everlasting, all-engulfing shadows like a black envelope, sealed and forgotten. They clouded your eyes, your mind, your everything. And you let them be. You chose darkness over light and yet hoped for a streak of lightning.

But you know, lightnings don't last for ever. They only show you a part truth. The other part ... a lie? Maybe. Who knows!

Why live a part lie then? A half-truth?

Open your eyes when there's still time. Clear your mind. Shadows will be there, lurching in the corner, looking for an opening, but you don't live in them.

Draw the curtains and let there be light.

Let your feelings flow, free of shackles, like a river flowing endlessly happy in its belief that it will meet the oceans one day .
Don't look for love. Feel it. Embrace it.

The words came out like a torrent and hung heavy in the still air, as if unsure of which way to go.

Finally he stopped and looked at the mirror. The face that stared back at him was both his enemy and friend, from the day he first saw light, and darkness.

Bio: Born in 1966 and brought up in Kolkata with parents having an intense interest in literature, Raja grew up in ambient surroundings. His schooling was from Patha Bhavan which added to the flavour. Having done his Masters in English Literature from Calcutta University, Raja Chakraborty turned out to be a bilingual poet writing in Bengali and English. An ardent fan of Sukumar Roy, Raja’s literary journey began with 'chhora' or rhymes in Bengali. He has publishes four books of such 'nonsense rhymes' in the lines of the famed ‘Abol Tabol’ of Sukumar Roy so far. Prodded by Kiriti Sengupta of Hawakal Prokashana Raja dabbled in English poetry as well and till date has four books of English poems all of which has been well-received and critically acclaimed. To add to the kitty he has also published a book of poems in Bengali, bordering on the philosophical. It in fact is a quagmire that the same person has traversed across languages and produced nonsense rhymes and intensely probing philosophical poems with the same elan. A complete read of his works clearly indicates that he is more towards the serious and philosophical in his English and Bengali poems while his flair for humour and satire finds expanse in his Bengali rhymes. Raja also doodles, sketches and paints apart from being a keen sportsman. His passion is word-play and punning…he’s adept in breaking words and giving them new meaning. If forced beyond his laziness, he contributes to magazines and anthologies. He has just published in his new title in English, About Maya and Other Poems, available on Amazon and Hawakal portals. 

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